Participation in Rowing up 12 per cent in a year

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The latest Active People figures published today by Sport England show encouraging signs for rowing, with once-a-week participation in the sport by those aged 16 and over up 12 per cent, in a year which saw the worst winter for the sport for a generation.

Once-a-week participation by those aged 26 and over was up by 17 per cent. Widespread flooding across the UK during the winter hampered much rowing activity during this period. The APS figures published today indicate that rowers enthusiastically returned to the water in numbers in the spring, and participation in the sport for the rest of 2014 was very healthy.

“It is very encouraging to see that the numbers of people taking part in rowing have increased significantly in the 12 months to 31 October 2014, despite the adverse weather and water conditions we faced during last winter,” said Neil Chugani, outgoing CEO of British Rowing. “The initiatives and efforts of British Rowing, its 550 clubs across the country, and the continued inspiration provided by our international  success are all having a positive impact in growing participation in the sport.”

He added: “It is particularly exciting to see that there is a new generation of young people enjoying the sport, with almost 23,000 14-15 year-olds now rowing at least once a week.”

British Rowing enjoyed record attendances across many regattas in 2014 including the British Rowing Masters and Junior Championships and the British Universities & Colleges (BUCS) regatta.

An illustration of the proactive approach taken by the sport is the forthcoming British Rowing Indoor Championships to be held on Sunday, 8th February, an event that will host more than 2000 people, including members of the national team, at the Lee Valley VeloPark, the former London Olympic Velodrome.

Simon Dickie, Head of Youth and Community said: “The response to our new Indoor Championships has been very positive. We expect three times the number of competitors that took part in 2013, and it will be a great opportunity to see rowers of all ages and abilities participating alongside each other in the same event.”

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